After struggling to create turnovers last season, the Detroit Lions posted a total of four takeaways in their Week One win over the Arizona Cardinals.
Last season, the Detroit Lions recorded just 14 total takeaways against opposing offenses. That was tied for the fourth lowest amount in the NFL in 2016. In their Week One matchup against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, the Lions’ defense was able to create four takeaways in the 35-23 come from behind victory.
Intercepting Cardinals’ veteran quarterback Carson Palmer three times, Detroit’s secondary appears to be much improved. The trio of picks were actually recorded by a trio of Lions’ safeties. Those defenders being Miles Killebrew, Tavon Wilson and Glover Quin.
So what’s the secret to the Motor City’s defensive resurgence in the turnover department? According to Quin, who is in his ninth season in the NFL, it’s all about doing their jobs and allowing the takeaways to come to them.
"“I try to preach to the guys all the time: interceptions don’t come from doing something spectacular,” Quin told the Detroit Free Press. “Nine times out of 10 if you just do your job and be in the spot you’re supposed to be in and hustle, interceptions will come to you. And so, we ran perfect spots (Sunday) and we were ready to make some plays.”"
It also helps to face a 37-year old quarterback who apparently contemplated hanging up his cleats in the offseason. Still, the Lions were in position to make those plays on Sunday. And that’s something that happened far too rarely last season.
Speaking of aging quarterbacks, the Lions could find themselves having similar success in Week Two as they face Eli Manning and the struggling New York Giants on Monday Night Football. The Giants’ offense looked awful in their regular season opener against their NFC East rivals, the Dallas Cowboys.
Posting a single field goal in the 19-3 shellacking, Manning in particular struggled as his porous offensive line failed to protect the 36-year old veteran quarterback against a relatively weak Dallas’ pass rush. With Detroit’s more talented defensive line, the Lions secondary should have a field day against the G-Men in front of a primetime audience.
In the words of Detroit Lions’ veteran safety Glover Quin, their secondary simply has to let those interceptions come to them.